It has been a very bad weekend for Chris Mullin and the St. John's Red Storm.
First on Friday, they failed to show up against Incarnate Word and suffered a shocking loss in Queens.
Now they find themselves in an even bigger hole, as they took a loss to the NJIT Highlanders on Sunday afternoon.
The game started out poorly for the Johnnies, as NJIT got on them early and held the lead for pretty much the whole game. NJIT's Chris Jenkins had a big first half as he shot 6-of-7 and had 16 points to lead all scorers as the Highlanders held a 39-35 lead at the half.
St. John's made it a close game in the second half as they got to within three, but were not able to get stops late down the stretch. And that, along with a missed layup by the Red Storm, sealed the deal as the Johnnies suffered their fifth loss of the year and their second loss at home by the score of 83-74.
Here are three things we learned from this game
1. St. John's was poor from the outside
It was just a bad shooting afternoon for St. John's. The Red Storm took 70 shots in this game and only made 24 of them. Without me telling you how the actual percentage looked, you could probably tell that it's not good. And you'd be right. St. John's shot a woeful 34.3 percent from the field and they shot a terrible 25 percent from 3-point land, only making eight out of 32 attempts. Even the leading scorer Federico Mussini shot only 6-of-18 from the field. Yikes.
2. Free throw woes were present
To make matters worse, St. John's also couldn't seem to hit a free throw. The Red Storm missed 16 free throws, as they shot 52.9% from the line. Compare that to NJIT, who shot 75.9 percent from the charity stripe. In a game as close as this one, little things such as free throw shooting can make a difference. Free throw shooting was a problem for St. John's against Incarnate Word as well so it looks like Chris Mullins has some work to do with that.
3. Give credit to NJIT
This game was a lot of what St. John's didn't do and what NJIT did. The Highlanders played a great game as they shot 52.1 percent from the field and shot 55% from the perimeter. When you are the underdog, you have to shoot the ball well and make sure you have the 3-ball going your favor. They got a great performance by Damon Lynn who had 32 points to lead all scorers and he hit five 3's in the process. NJIT played a great game. Hats off to them.